Special Needs Dentistry for Kids – Midland, TX
Every Child Has a Dental Home Here!
It seems like every child has their own way of making an impression. Some of them are goofy and are always finding ways to make us laugh, while others constantly surprise us with how smart they are. A few of them are downright adorable in ways we can’t even describe. Of course, a portion of those adorable, smart, and funny kids also have access needs that should be met to help them feel more comfortable in their environment. At Midland Kid’s Dentist, we bend over backward to provide children who have special needs with the top-tier oral healthcare they deserve in an environment that they enjoy!
Special Needs Present Unique Dental Challenges
Regular dental visits are essential for all kids, regardless of their shape, size, or abilities. However, it is particularly vital for children who have certain behavioral, physical, or cognitive disabilities. Here are just a few examples of why this is so:
- Children with certain behavioral disorders may be able likely to grind their teeth or bite down on objects that aren’t food, putting them at risk of breaking or chipping.
- Whether because of physical or cognitive limitations, some kids find it very difficult to get into a regular routine of brushing and flossing their teeth.
- Some conditions, such as Down syndrome, may cause teeth to erupt late or never erupt at all.
By making sure your child visits their special needs kid's dentist in Midland for regular dental checkups, you give us an opportunity to spot dental problems before they become severe. Allowing us to treat such issues early on may spare your child from cavities and other painful conditions down the road.
How Do We Help Our Patients with Special Needs Feel Comfortable?
If your child has special needs, we’ll be happy to sit down and talk with you about their unique situation. You can let us know about your concerns and whether your child has anxiety about visiting the dentist. Once we’ve gathered some facts and met your little one, we’ll put together a strategy for making sure your child’s smile stays as healthy as possible.
You can rest assured that we place a heavy emphasis on making children feel comfortable during their appointment. We understand that dentistry can be scary for any kids, particularly those with special needs, and the last thing we want to do is traumatize anyone.
One of the strategies we use to help kids relax is sedation. We offer a few different types of sedation, and the kind that is right for your child will depend on how anxious they are and the nature of the dental work they need to have done. Here is a brief look at the forms of sedation that we can use for children:
- Nitrous oxide . Otherwise known as laughing gas, this mild form of sedation is safe for kids of all ages.
- Oral sedation . These orally administered drugs provide powerful relaxation. We’ll be sure to discuss all of the potential side effects of oral sedation with you before your child’s procedure.
- General anesthesia . This isn’t necessary in most cases, but if your child needs to be fully unconscious during their appointment, we’ll team up with an anesthesia expert from a local hospital to make it happen.
As your special needs pediatric dentist in Midland , we strive to provide excellent care for kids from every walk of life, including those with special needs.
Dental Tips for Patients with Special Needs
Children with intellectual, physical, or behavioral disabilities can face unique barriers, and to help you keep your favorite smile healthy and happy, we’ve provided some tips to ensure their oral health stays on the right track:
- Routine Visits. Just like with adults, it’s crucial for children to have routine checkups and cleanings with their children’s dentist in Midland every six months once their first tooth has erupted. From there, routine at-home oral hygiene, like brushing twice a day and flossing daily, will help keep their teeth and gums healthy throughout their life. To make this more comfortable an enticing, be sure to get them a soft-bristled, kid’s-sized toothbrush and fun flavored floss!
- Fluoride to Protect from Cavities. Children are often at a higher risk of developing cavities because they’re still learning how to properly brush and floss their teeth. We can place a fluoridated gel over the surface of their teeth at their bi-annual cleanings to help strengthen their protective enamel and prevent decay.
- First Dental Visits. Most pediatric dentists offer fun first-time visits to help children get used to visiting the dentist. That way, they aren’t scared or anxious whenever it’s time for them to have their teeth cleaned. This can be especially helpful for little ones who have sensory needs or stick to routines. If you have any questions about this, please give us a call !
Special Needs Dentistry FAQs
What is Special Needs Dentistry?
This form of dentistry generally offers dental services for patients who have a physical, mental, sensory, cognitive, or developmental type of impairment. Our team is highly trained in providing proper care for children with special needs, especially when it comes to offering a calm and safe space for your little one. Allowing them to get their dental treatment while minimizing any anxieties is the name of the game!
Which Types of Preventive Care Can Help Special Needs Children?
Whether a child has special needs or not, they will benefit greatly from brushing, flossing, and rinsing with mouthwash every day. Having a healthy diet consisting of fruits, vegetables, and lean meats will also help promote better gum and jawbone health in the long run. Undergoing routine teeth cleanings should keep plaque from building up, which can increase the risk of gum disease. Dental sealants can be essential for special needs children as they can help prevent tooth decay.
What If a Child Isn’t Able to Relax?
If your little one isn’t able to remain calm or still during their appointment, our team will gladly provide sedation dentistry to help them relax throughout their visit. Our top priorities are that we keep your child safe while performing the necessary dental treatments they need in the most comfortable method possible. That’s why we offer nitrous oxide and oral conscious sedation to help keep your little one calm and stress-free to varying degrees. We’ll also make sure to evaluate the medications and the behavior of your child during the initial consultation phase before moving forward with their treatment.
Do Special Needs Children Have Certain Dental Needs?
There are several kinds of dental needs that many special needs children share. In most cases, they’re typically susceptible to tooth decay because of some form of oral trauma, through taking medication, and issues with brushing their pearly whites. One of the best ways to address these problems ahead of time is through regular dental checkups with their dentist. Not only will they clean your child’s teeth and gums, but they’ll keep an eye out for any underlying issues and treat them before they can worsen over time.
What Should I Do Before the Appointment?
Before taking your child to visit their dentist, it’s best to try and talk to them about their appointment to help them feel more at ease. When explaining the process they’ll undergo, make sure to describe it in a positive light and try to help them understand the importance of having their teeth treated by the dentist. Building up the dentist as something exciting can help lower their anxieties, even if it’s just a little bit. Our team will also help with this conversation once you and your child arrive.